Thursday, June 19, 2008

What the World Needs Now

Good friend Wobs is fond of saying: "Just what the world needs, another blog!" I heed his warning (although his post might have been the final straw in my thinking about this). So let me start by saying that I am not sure if this will be a real blog or not . . . right now it is just an idea.

The idea is to have a place where friends and visitors could talk about what music/artists/discs they are listening to--in short, to share tunes, but in a more personal sense than just reading a music mag or surfing a musical "store" in whatever form. It is one thing for some music critic to spin us on a new artist or disc, it is another thing for one friend to tell another that "this is something I like." It is a revealing moment about the person making the recommendation and about the relationship between the people involved. Because of that, I find that it is the music that friends have turned me on to that has been the most important to me and that I have really enjoyed in the long run. That is, friends are the ones who have helped me "fine tune" my musical tastes.

Whether it is my Little Sis who made me realize I missed the whole Ryan Adams thing while the focus here was on babies, moving and a new job; or, a Utah poet who was surprised that I didn't have any Luscious Jackson; or, Wobs who had to get me up to speed on the Flaming Lips and Wilco, or my college roommate who has turned me onto more music, from the Waterboys to Brad Mehldau, than I could possibly account for here, I am indebted to many good folks for their knowledge, awareness and love for music. I suspect, although I don't know, that this fact is true for others as well.

Okay, so I think there are a couple of reasons to maybe start this blog. First, if enough friends are willing to join me here and talk about music that is simply enough. I know--just call! Email! We will talk about these things. True enough, but I tell you that by the time the day ends and the kids are in bed, I just want to "tune out" and putting on some music and checking in with what friends are listening to sounds like a nice way to stay in touch with both friends and music. Music has always been a key connection for me with my closest friends and I hope this might be one way to rekindle those connections and develop new ones.

My other reason is an "economy of scale" argument (otherwise known as me being lazy). There is so much music out there and so much information, but really who has time? (I mean there are blogs to be started after all!) Seriously, my thinking here is to have a few people willing to weigh in and share ideas as a way to keep all of us more connected. The other piece of this that I have really come to value about blogs is the archiving of these discussions that, in this, case could serve as a sort of cataloging of potential music folks might want to pick up. I can't imagine I am the only one who sees a benefit in that?

To give you an idea, here are a few ideas of the kind of posts I am thinking about (although this is in no way exhaustive or prescriptive--and post titles will not be required to reference Burt Bacharach songs):
  • The plain old "this is what I am listening to and why you might be interested in it" post.
  • The open thread artist/new disc post.
  • The "genre" post: hey here is some great music to listen to while driving--you know, "car tunes."
  • The review of reviews: looking at recent mags or blogs to see what they are saying about new releases.
  • Recent purchases.
  • Lazy You Tube posts--too tired to write, watch this cool music video.
And who knows what else--you?

So I am going to post a few entries here for a little while as I fiddle around with the site to give you all a flavor of what I am thinking of (although you might suspect the flavor will be a bit on the vanilla side if it is just me). Let me know what you think and any ideas you have to make this more worthwhile--topics, contributors who might be interested that you trust, links or other web sites that should be added to the lists--the site is deliberately incomplete so that others can make suggestions to help form what The Tuning Room is. All that I know for sure right now is I imagine something much more akin to a college apartment with friends laying around listening to and talking about music than some great new critic's corner for music.

Let me know--will friends tune in or are there already too many stations on the dial?


Lisa B. said...

Oh, I will tune in. I am nothing if not obsessive and another blog is just the thing I need right now, especially if it will focus on music. More to say about your next post, Mr. Brad M., and the Reverend Al Green. Glad to get to hear your voice again, and especially on this subject.

cps said...

Yeah--hearing form Lisa B makes the whole endeavor worthwhile! We will see if others are interested and of course I am always looking for anyone who wants to join me as "a player" here. Say the word and this blog goes communal (with no pressure to write with any regularity--think archives).

So we will see if this is workable, particularly since the Brothers K would never let this blog interfere with theirs!

Great to hear from you.